Defining narrativity as the enabling force of narrative, this is the first full-length exploration of the concept in fiction in English. It develops the notion of a 'logic of narrativity', and by this means contributes a new critical strategy to the field of narrative theory. The book also takes issue with a number of critical approaches which have in recent years acquired near-orthodox status in the matter of textual interpretation. Most prominent among these approaches are deconstruction and a particular form of Marxist criticism. The author's own theoretical claims are substantiated by readings of major twentieth-century novels by Conrad, Joyce, Flann O'Brien, and Arthur Koestler, and the book concludes with an analysis of an earlier narrative, Maria Edgeworth's Castle Rackrent, which illustrates the wider premises of the theory and its applications.